Category Archives: Awards



I am a big lover of YA fiction. Whether it’s dystopia, coming of age or a guilty pleasure romance, I love them all. But YA novels are always better when they’re set in a world you know – like Australia!

#LoveOzYA is a trending tag to celebrate some of our great Aussie YA. Here’s a list of Co-op faves! Be sure to check them out and tell us your fave!

The Last Girl by Michael Adams

Mind reading. Dystopia. Sydney. This book is an amazing, action packed thriller.




You’re The Kind of Girl I Write Songs About by Daniel Herborn

Music. Inner-West Sydney. First love. Sweet book, this one is about 2 teenagers who are drifting through their final HSC year.




Looking for Alibrandi  by Marlina Marchetta

A standard classic every Aussie child has to read in high school. A great story of clashing cultures and coming of age.





Tomorrow When The War Began by John Marsden

Is there any way this book could not make this list? It has absolutely everything in a dystopic, war themed adventure and is an amazing series with incredible characters.





Puberty Blues by Gabrielle Carey and Kathy Lette

True blue classic.





The Guy the Girl, the Artist and the Ex by Gabrielle Williams

love, humour and the Melbourne Art scene!










The Co-op Wins Multichannel Retailer of the Year

The Co-op has been named Multichannel Retailer of the Year at the 2015 National Retail Association (NRA) Rewards for Excellence during an elaborate ‘Mad Hatter’ themed awards dinner in Melbourne, June 2nd 2015. This prestigious award highlights just how far the Co-op has come on its business transformation journey, which began less than three years ago.

“We are absolutely delighted to receive this award,” commented Peter Knock, the Co-op’s Chief Executive Officer. “This is a major win for the Co-op and a true credit to the hard work the entire Co-op team has put into creating an innovative and unique multichannel retailer.”


Pictured receiving the award is Greg Smith, Chief Commercial Officer, The Co-op

These awards recognise the best of the best in the retail industry, acknowledging elite individuals and businesses who have consistently proven to be thought-leaders in their field, and who are setting a whole new standard of excellence in the sector.

Despite increasing shifts in the retail industry, the Co-op has adopted a number of strategic measures to transform the future of multi-channel retailing.  After extensive market research into the concerns, needs and wants of the modern day consumer, the Co-op formulated a strong multichannel strategy focused towards delivering an outstanding customer-centric multichannel retail experience including organic, customer relationship, and digital marketing channels.

The Co-op’s industry leading and innovative strategy allows their consumers to interact with their brand 24/7, however they want, wherever they want. This is a key reason the business was awarded this year’s NRA Multichannel Retailer of the Year.

The Co-op has evolved to become one of Australia’s premier multichannel retailers with 60 stores, a membership base of 1.8 million members and a digital footprint that has more than doubled in sales over the past two and a half years.

“Our transformation journey is something that is ongoing, and gaining this industry recognition only further bolsters the Co-op’s commitment to achieving our goal of becoming the most innovative member-owned retailer in the world,” Mr Knock stated. “We are so excited about the future, with all of us here at the Co-op working tirelessly to improve our Member experience and the multi-channel retail experience as a whole.”


Miles Franklin Award Longlist

The longlist for the 2015 Miles Franklin Literary Award has been announced. Congratulations to all ten authors who received this accolade.
The titles are:

In Certain Circles  by Elizabeth Harrower

In Certain Circles

Golden Boys by Sonya Hartnett

Golden Boys

The Eye of the Sheep by Sofie Laguna

The Golden Age by Joan London
The Golden Age

The Lost Child by Suzanne McCourt
Lost Child The

Here Come the Dogs  by Omar Musa
Here Come the Dogs

When the Night Comes  by Favel Parrett
When the Night Comes

After Darkness  by Christine Piper
After Darkness

Tree Palace by Craig Sherborne

Nest  by Inga Simpson

The shortlist will be announced on 18 May, with the big winner announced on 23 June, taking home a cool $60,000. This year’s judges are:

– Richard Neville, NSW Mitchell librarian
 Murray Waldren, The Australian journalist
– Lindy Jones, bookseller
– Craig Munro, biographer, book historian, publishing editor and Queensland Writers Centre founding chair
– Susan Sheridan, emeritus professor

Miles Franklin

Stella Miles Franklin – 1902

Want to know more about this year’s longlisted books and authors? Find out more here!

About the Miles Franklin Literary Awards

This annual award was established in honour  of Australian female author, Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin (pen name Miles Franklin), author of  My Brilliant Career. When Miles passed away in 1954, she left money in her will to set up a literary prize in order to advance, improve and better Australian Literature. Stella Miles Franklin devoted her life to the promotion of literature in Australia. Find out more about Miles Franklin here.


Thiel Grant for Online Writing

Exciting news for all budding web writers! Melbourne teacher and blogger Philip Thiel has announced the inaugural $5000 Thiel Grant for Online Writing. This is a grant that’s very close to Thiel’s heart, as it is completely funded by his own salary (find out more about this here).

The brilliant initiative is designed to encourage and support creative online writing and highlight the ocean of talent out there in the world of online writine. Thiel’s passion is obvious when he speaks of the grant:

‘[Online writing] is often highly original and experimental, off-the-cuff or fragmented—and it’s nearly always written for free. The grant will give one writer the chance to have their online writing financially backed. It can be seen as a kind of commission for a series of posts exploring a single concept, and will suit writers who are already producing this kind of material online.’

The lucky grant recipient will, over one year, produce 50 posts on an agreed idea/theme and publish it on their own website. There are no restrictions on length, genre or style, just so long as the work is written for the web.

All submissions will be judged by Thiel, Writers Victoria director Kate Larsen and writer, blogger and The Five Mile Press commissioning editor Angela Meyer. The winner will be the person whose concept is deemed the most exciting and writing a standout.

Entries are open to Australian writers and close on 28 February, 2015, and the winner will announced in early March. To apply, click here.

Check out Philip Thiel’s blog at Teacher in the Rye.

Great titles for Online Writers

Blogging All-In-One for Dummies , Susan Gunelius         Blogging Revolution , Loewenstein

Blogging for Creatives , Robin Houghton          Blogging and Tweeting without Getting Sued; A Global Guide to the Law for Anyone Writing Online , Mark Pearson




The Stringybark Short Story Awards

The Stringybark<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
Short Story Award<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
Inspiring creativity
Are you an aspiring short story writer, a budding author looking to get your words in print, or just someone with a great Aussie yarn to tell? Why not enter the Stringybark Short Story Award 2014. Applications are still open. But you better be quick – they close next Sunday, 18 January 2015.
 To Enter … 

Simply write a short story (no more than 1500 words) that’s inspired by or has a link to Australia (however tenuous that link may be!). The winner will be the story that the judges find most entertaining. Yep, that’s it.  No other restrictions! The story can be fiction, non-fiction or little bit of both.

You might want to write about the suburb where you grew up, the unique Aussie landscape, or modern day Australian society as a whole. Or perhaps you want to tell that tale about when the kangaroo bounced into your backyard and changed your life! It can be set in the past, the present, the future and be as realistic or as out there as you wish! Just so long as there’s a link to Australia. So, let your imagination run as wild as brumbies in the Red Centre and have fun!
The Prizes
There’s more than $860 worth of prizes in cash and books in total to be won.
First Prize – $375 cash + publication + certificate + e-book + paperback + choice of any Stringybark book (other than the 2015 Stringybark Short Story Award book) ($407 value )

Second Prize – $175 cash + publication + certificate + e-book + paperback + choice of any Stringybark book (other than the 2015 Stringybark Short Story Award book) ($207 value)

Third Prize – $75 cash + publication + certificate + e-book + paperback + choice of any Stringybark book (2015 Stringybark Short Story Award book) ($107 value)

Highly commended stories may also be invited to have their stories published and, if so receive a free copy of the e-book (approximately $141 value)

All stories must be sent via email. Closing date for entries is 18 January 2015,  and winners will be notified by 24 March 2015. Full submissions checklist and email info can be found here.

Entry Fees:

One story – $9.95

Two stories $18.90

Three stories $27.00



We Won! | APA Awards Wrap Up

The winners of the 2014 for campus booksellers were presented last month at the annual Tertiary Access Group conference in Sydney. We were thrilled to take home two awards on the day, and be named runner-up in three more categories. Yay us!

Our APA Award Successes

Most Effective Engagement with Campus Community
Winner: The Co-op, Macquarie University
Runner-Up: UNSW Bookshop

Most Effective Copyright Protection Initiatives
Winner: The Co-op, Sydney University
Runner Up: QUT Bookshop

Best Textbook Buyers and Sales Staff
Winner: Monash University Bookshop, Caulfield
Runner Up: The Co-op, Queensland University

Best Ordering and Stocking Practice
Winner: QUT Bookshop
Runner Up: The Co-op, Edith Cowan University

Most Effective Sell Through and Marketing Initiative
Winner: UNSW Bookshop
Runner Up: The Co-op, Sydney University



2014 CHASS National Forum

The CHASS National Forum is just a few short months away. Today, CHASS Executive Director, Emeritus Professor Steven Schwartz AM, gives you some info on the exciting event and explains why it’s so important for anyone in the Humanities, Arts or Social Sciences.

What is the CHASS National Forum?

The 2014 CHASS National Forum will be held on 8 and 9 October at the Woodward Conference Centre, The University of Melbourne. This annual Forum provides an opportunity for academics, artists, practitioners and policy makers to meet, share ideas and promote the humanities, arts and social sciences. The theme of the 2014 Forum is ‘Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences and the Public Good’. Over the course of two days, researchers, political leaders, policy makers and artists will examine how the humanities, arts and social sciences can help us deal with contemporary social problems.

Who’s on the Forum agenda?

We are bringing together Hugh Mackay, David Malouf, Michael Kirby, Frank Furedi, Emma Bennison, Denise Meredyth, George Brandis, Tim Wilson, Les Murray, David Christian, Graeme Turner, Julie Hare, Susannah Eliott, Andrew Jaspan, Jo Lindsay, Anthony Elliott, Christina Parolin, and some of Australia’s leading social scientists and policy makers to explore, debate and develop future strategies for HASS to contribute to the public good.

Why should people attend the Forum?

The CHASS Forum is not just another academic conference. It includes entertainment, exhibitions, art, design, the CHASS Australia Prizes, debates, a speed-dating contest for senior researchers, and much more. Despite the high level of public and political support for HASS subjects, we CHASS members frequently feel that we are struggling—not only financially but also to prove our value. This is why the forthcoming Forum will include discussions and master classes on how to turn our high public esteem into tangible financial support and stronger influence in Australia’s public conversation. Early bird registration is now open and spots are filling up! You can register to attend part of or the entire Forum before 31 August and save. So, don’t miss out. Before you go out for that next cup of coffee, or update your Facebook status, or send a Tweet, click here and register for what will be the most exciting Forum ever.

Tell us about the 2014 CHASS Australia Prizes Dinner 

This year’s Forum will also include the 2014 CHASS Australia Prizes Dinner, which will be held at Queen’s Hall, Parliament of Victoria, Melbourne on 8 October. The evening will include an award ceremony for the first place recipients of the CHASS Australia Prizes. There will be four prizes this year: one for a book, one for performance, practice or policy making, the third for an early career future leader, and one for a student (the Co-op is sponsoring the student award – see more on here).


CHASS Executive Director Professor Steven Schwartz

Emeritus Professor Steven Schwartz AM is Executive Director of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and
Social Sciences, is former Vice Chancellor of Macquarie University, prior to which he was Vice-Chancellor of Brunel University (London).  Professor Schwartz specialises in higher education, health policy and health economics.


2014 ARA Australian Retail Awards

We, at the Co-op, are thrilled to announce we were awarded (for the second year in a row, may we add!) the eBay Inc Australian Multichannel Retailer of the Year runner-up at the 2014 ARA Australian Retail Awards in Melbourne on Tuesday, 15th July!

The ARA Australian Retail Awards are Australia’s only national retail awards program, and are designed to recognise and applaud all people in all sectors of retail, from established brands, innovators and big employers to owner operators, small to medium enterprises and graduates.

This award is bestowed upon “cutting-edge retailers who have developed and implemented a multichannel business strategy that has complemented and enhanced their traditional bricks & mortar store(s). Retailers who have embraced the internet, social media, blogs and mobile phones to connect with consumers will be rewarded.” Needless to say, we feel extremely honoured to have been acknowledged as a key player in the dynamic multichannel market.

As all of you know, this last year has been a big one for the Co-op. We’re always working hard to deliver new and innovative additions that benefit our customers. Some examples that are particularly pertinent to the multichannel sector include our Click & Collect service, the introduction of standard free shipping with all online orders, eParcel (the ability to track online orders via Auspost), to name just a few. We’re thrilled our hard work and commitment to our long-term transformation goals have paid off and been recognised, as it means we’re on the right path to delivering the best retail experience to all. Furthermore, we want to thank you, our customers, for your ongoing support – without our customers and Members there would be no Co-op.




Enactus Australia Championships

A huge congratulations to the University of Sydney Enactus team who took out the Enactus Australia final in Brisbane last Thursday! They’re now off to the Enactus World Cup 2014 in Beijing, China. Well done to you all! 🙂 A big round of applause to the University of Western Australia team, who were awarded runners up.

The Co-op’s COO, Thorsten Wichtendahl, was lucky enough to be on the judging panel at the two-day event. “It was so inspiring to hear the innovative ideas of these young students and see the efforts they put in to help people less fortunate than themselves,” Wichtendahl said. “The winning team –  University of Sydney – had some really fantastic ideas; their project was all about helping newly-arrived refugees gain practical work experience by running community cooking classes.”


More information on USYD’s Enactus project, Culinary Tales, can be found here.

The Enactus World Cup Event will take place on October 22-24 2014.

What is Enactus?

Enactus is an international not-for-profit organisation made up of a network of university students, academics and business leaders. Guided by these academics and business leaders, the student teams create and run projects and, through the power of entrepreneurial action, work to improve the quality of life for the world’s disadvantaged. The Enactus experience not only transforms lives, it helps students develop invaluable leadership and project management skills.



Get your nominations in for the 2014 Chass Australia Prizes!

Awarded by the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Science (CHASS), the CHASS Australia Prizes honour the amazing achievements made by Aussies working, studying and training in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) fields.

Never heard of the prizes before? That might be because 2014 is the first time the prizes are being given out, making it even more exciting and significant for all involved. We at The Co-op are super pumped to be one of the proud sponsors of the awards, which will see $9,500 worth of prizes handed out.

Here’s a rundown of the awards to bring you up to speed.

The Awards

There are four prizes in total, all of them relating to the HASS fields and each honouring unique achievements.

CHASS Australia Prize for a Student in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

PRIZE$500 Co-op Voucher

This one’s sponsored by us (woo hoo!), and is open to any student enrolled at an educational institution within Australia. The prize will be awarded to the essay, exhibition, performance, project or thesis that the judges believe best demonstrates the contribution of HASS areas to our understanding of ourselves and nation.

The nominated work must have been completed between 1 July 2012 and 31 121100-Award_290x290December 2013, and all works must be in English. Find all the important deets and nitty gritties here.

CHASS Australia Prize for a Future Leader in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences


Sponsored by Future Leaders, this prize will go to a person who demonstrates awesome leadership skills in the arts, humanities or social sciences areas. To be eligible, nominees must have been under 35 years of age before 31 December 2013. Check out all the details here.

CHASS Australia Prize for a Book in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences


If you published a book (e-books included!) in a HASS area between 1 July 2012 and 31 December 2013 you could be nominated for this prize! The winner will be the author whose book, in the opinion of the judges, contributes most to Australian cultural and intellectual life. See here for more info.

CHASS Australia Prize for Distinctive Work in the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences


This prize is for a performance, exhibition, project or a specific advance in policy development in any HASS field. Performances or exhibitions must have been open to the public between 1 July 2012 and 31 December 2013. Get all the deets here.

Nominations are still open …

Do you know someone you think deserves recognition?! Nominations are still open, but you better be quick – the submissions door closes at 5pm on 30 June. You can even nominate yourself if you feel you deserve it! J There’s no application or submission fee, so there’s no excuse for you not to nominate. The nomination form can be downloaded here.

All awards will be presented at the annual CHASS National Forum Dinner, which will be held at Parliament House, Melbourne on 8 October 2014.


The Judging Panel

  • Lindy Allen, Acting Executive Director, Regional Arts Australia
  • Associate Professor Peta Ashworth, Leader – Science into Society Group, CSIRO
  • Chris Bowen, CEO, Music Council of Australia
  • Emeritus Professor Max Coltheart, Department of Cognitive Science, Macquarie University
  • Dr. Nigel Erskine, Research Manager, Australian National Maritime Museum
  • Julie Hobbs FDIA, National President Elect, Design Institute of Australia
  • Associate Professor Jo Lindsay, Convenor – Sociology and Gender Studies, Monash University; President,
  • The Australian Sociological Association (TASA)
  • Dr Tom Karmel, Former Managing Director, National Centre for Vocational Education Research
  • Professor Catriona Mackenzie, President, Australasian Association of Philosophy
  • Edel McIvor, Assistant Buyer, The Co-Op Bookstore
  • Professor Joseph Siracusa, Deputy Dean – Global & Language Studies, School of Global, Urban and Social Studies, RMIT University
  • Vicki Sowry, Director, Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT)
  • Colin Steele, Emeritus Fellow, Australian National University
  • Dr. Helen Sykes AM, Director, Future Leaders; President, Trust for Young Australian; Chair, The Australian Collaboration